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Young Pushes for New Ground-based Interceptors in Amendment to National Defense Authorization


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Washington, D.C. – As the U.S. House of Representatives continues debate on the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2018Alaska Congressman Don Young is pushing for the inclusion of an amendment to strengthen our nation’s missile defense systems and authorize the development of an additional 28 Ground-based Interceptors. Young’s amendment to the NDAA, expected to be voted on this evening, closely reflects legislation he introduced earlier this year with Senator Dan Sullivan – the Advancing America’s Missile Defense Act.

Photo by the Office of U.S. Congressman Don Young

Congressman Young speaking in favor of his amendment to the FY18 NDAA (click here to watch).

 

“North Korea has conducted approximately 80 ballistic missile and three nuclear tests under the rogue and irrational dictatorship of Kim Jong-Un.  Recent aggression makes matters even worse.  On July 4, 2017 – our Independence Day – it was announced that North Korea launched its first Intercontinental Ballistic Missile – capable of reaching my home state of Alaska,” Congressman Young said during testimony to the House Rules Committee. “I believe this reckless and calculated behavior by the North Korean regime speaks volumes to the importance of the strategically placed U.S. missile defense capabilities, including the Ground-based interceptors at Fort Greely, AK and other elements of the nation's ballistic missile defense system. These forces guard this nation and are the first responders against weapons of mass destruction.”

Young says his amendment to strengthen America’s missile defense shield, including assets strategically located at Fort Greely, Alaska, is crucially important to address emerging threats by our nation’s adversaries. His amendment would:

  • Authorize an additional 28 Ground-Based Interceptors (GBIs)
  • Accelerate the completion of an outstanding environmental impact statement (EIS) for an additional interceptor site on the East Coast or in the Midwest regions of the U.S.
  • Require a Department of Defense report on increasing the number of interceptions distributed across the U.S. to 100; includes specifics on their optimal locations and studies on the possibility of transportable GBIs.
  • Promote an integrated, layered ballistic missile defense system incorporating THAAD, Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense, Aegis Ashore, and Patriot Air and Missile Defense Systems.
  • Accelerate the development and deployment of a space-based sensor layer, and advanced interceptor technologies.

Congressman Young, a long a supporter of Ground-based Midcourse Defense, was instrumental in bringing the Ballistic Missile Defense System element to Fort Greely, Alaska with the passage of the “All-American Resolution” in the late 1990’s. His resolution stated that any missile defense system deployed to protect the United States against the threat of ballistic missile attack should include the equal protection for all America, including Alaska, Hawaii, the territories and the commonwealths of the United States.

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